Saturday, May 27, 2017

A Hot Half

Holy Smokes was this half marathon a hot one. First time it's ever been so hot you felt as if you were melting into the pavement. I wasn't looking for a PR in this race, I just wanted to survive and finish it upright. And I'm happy to say I did just that. Woo!! I did have one goal, to stick with Susan as much as I could. But I quickly realized around Mile 3 that wasn't going to happen with this race.

A few of the Monday Misfits. We took an early photo
so we could go stand in line for the portable toilets ;)

After standing in line, it was finally time to make our way to the start line.

The lady in the upper left corner wasn't as excited as we "looked"

They announced more water stops would be on course, wet towels and sprinklers.  Finally around mile 11, I scored a wet towel.  I sure could have used it way sooner but it was still great to cool off, even if I was almost done with the race.

Looking all Casper but my face being a beet.
Thanks Colleen for snapping this photo.

The water stops are always fun to see. This guy was dressed as if he was riding a camel. He was even trying his best to twerk in it. Hahahaha! I had to snap a photo with him. He was even at the finish line cheering everyone on.

Towards the end of the race, I started having calf cramps and I stopped sweating. After that, I was just done. While my time wasn't what I had hoped for (3:00:18), I still finished the race. Hopefully the next half won't be a zillion degrees out. ;)

Coming into the finish. I did beat last year's a minute. ;)

Susan & I after being stuck in traffic.

Happy Running! Even when the race doesn't go as planned.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Honor the Fallen 5k

Honoring and Remembering our Fallen has always been something close to my heart. And I was glad we stubbled across this race where your bib carries the name of a hero who is no longer with us.
I'm not sure how I didn't know about this race last year but I am excited we were able to run the second annual race. I look forward to running it next year. The race is so well organized. The race takes place at The Grove Living in College Grove. Running by million dollar homes was breathtaking. 

Smiles because we made it before the start. ;)

We decided to pick up our packets on race day. We didn't realize until we got there that parking was about a mile from the start line. We arrived a little late but thankfully there were golf cart shuttles going so we bummed a ride on the way up. A quick stop at the restrooms we were off running a mile back to the car. Only to turn around after dropping our bag and running back a mile to the start. We barely got to the top of the hill when it was time to turn around and go back down. 😂 Lesson learned.... either pick up the packet sooner or arrive at 8am. 😉 At least we were warmed up pretty good. 

My face...Next time finish eating the orange. ;)

After the race, there is a Memorial Mile with the Gold Star Families. On the walk, we were able to find the hero we were running in honor of.  Miranda ran in honor of CW2 Bernard Meister, he passed away after his helicopter crashed in Vietnam on February 14, 1970 during his second tour. In addition to serving in the Army he also served in the Marines. 

I had the honor of running for SGT. Bryan McCabe from Spring Hill. I didn't know his story either and planned to do a search once I got home. Shortly after taking this picture, a young woman grabbed me by the arm and asked if I ran in honor of SGT. McCabe. Once I said I did she said he was the husband of one of her friends. She then spoke words that ripped my heart out and made tears form. 

He had taken his own life. He left behind a wife and two children. She tried her best to comfort me, she said his wife and kids were doing ok now. But all I could think was we are failing our heroes. How the VA is failing our heroes. 

I also ran in honor of CW3 David Stanley.  I never got the chance to meet him either but I was able to meet his wife Kristy a few years ago at a fundraiser for our friend SSG. Chaz Allen. CW3 Stanley was killed on September 11, 2007 when his helicopter crashed during a training flight in Alabama. He was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division at Ft. Campbell. In addition to his lovely wife, he also left behind two children. 

My medal and the bib I wore on my back will be sent
to his wife Kristy

It was an honor running in memory of these men.
 Always speak their names. Never Forget. 

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Purity Dash 15k

So, against my better judgement or just plain peer pressure. I signed up for the Purity Dash, the Smitty 15k. Just a week after running the Special Kids 15k and two weeks after running the Oak Barrel Half. I don't think I have done that many races back to back since I first started running. But hey, it was the first race at 39 years old so lets go big. 

The weather was a complete 180 compared to last weeks race. Instead of wearing tights and a light long sleeve. It was shorts, tank and sunscreen. The start of the 15k was at 8am, by the time the one mile, 5k and 10k started the temps were around 80. Add in the beaming sun on the course the entire way it seemed even hotter. I'm not sure why the 15k didn't start sooner but at one point I almost took the cut off for the 10k folks just to end the misery sooner. 

Irene may have made an appearance towards the last part. Especially when volunteers were saying "you're almost there. You're doing great. I know its hot out, but you're almost there." I think I replied, "this is my first and last time doing this race. Who decided to start a race at 8am with the temps like this." Oops. She did say to the other volunteers they have heard a lot of people say that. Even the cop standing there had said I was way too hot. Maybe the heat was just affecting me too much. Multiple times I felt like jumping in the river just to cool off. 

Susan and I started together but I quickly lost her at Mile 4 as she was booking it across towards the greenway. I saw her again near Mile 7 and she was looking amazing and I felt like I was dying. 😅 The last mile tricks you into thinking "you're almost" there but nope. That was also where I experienced spots in my vision. I could feel I was dehydrated even though I drank a lot of water the days leading up to the race and even on race morning.  At one point, I almost grabbed a jug of water left at a water stop but I didn't think that would look good for photos. Instead I poured some in a cup and took off. 

Susan snagged a few photos at the finish line. I could hear her yelling "Smile for the Camera" 😀as I got closer. I was so excited to see the end. I wanted nothing but a nice cold towel on my face and lots of water. There were no cold towels and I came so close to laying on some ice that had been tossed to the side. But decided against it. 

I was unsure of my finish time, so I went to the tent. I ended up overhearing one of the guys with Nashville Striders saying "why would you walk a 15k?" Irene was still in full force so of course I responded because "its hot and there's no shade." I'd like to ask you "who decided to start the longest distance of the race last when the temps are even hotter?" He didn't have much of a response. The other gent at the table ended up getting me my finish time, 1:57:54. I was really hoping for a 1:40 but given the conditions, I'll take it. 

Happy Running!! 

Special Kids

A week ago I ran one of my favorite races, the Special Kids 15k. The first time I ran it I actually ran the entire course without stopping for a walk break. The course is pretty flat, the volunteers and crowd support amazing. I really wanted to run the race in about 1:40 but right before I left the house I got pretty sick. All fuel I consumed was no longer in my stomach and after that I had no desire to eat anything. I put some Swedish Fish in my pocket and took off out the door. Finally in the car I was hit with a headache and honestly thought about heading back to the house. I only grabbed my bag so I didn't have any meds with me. Thankfully, before the start of the race Sam had some in his car. A car parked far away from the start. ;) But he made it back in time before the start and my headache quickly went away by Mile 2.

I wasn't pleased with my performance but a finish, a 1:46:05 but a finish is a finish. The weather was beautiful that morning. A little chilly at first but by the end it was warming up nicely.  Sadly, this is about all I remember about the race. I've slept and ran a lot since then. ;) 

Happy Running!! 

Saturday, April 8, 2017

A Whiskey Run

No, no not what you're thinking.... Last weekend was the Oak Barrel Half Marathon in Lynchburg, TN home of Jack Daniels. This race is always a blast to run, even with the massive hill called Whiskey. The swag is always awesome. In addition to your race shirt, you also get a hat or visor and a pair of socks. If you haven't ran this race, put it on your bucket list. It's a must!!

My goal for this race was to run the first 4-4.5 miles slower until I conquered Whiskey Hill. And kick it up a notch and finish strong. That plan went to crap at Mile 2. I jumped in at the 10:00 pace group and well you can guess the rest. I still struggle with starting out too fast. Patience Grasshopper. ;)

The weather did a complete change. Leading up to the race, it was suppose to be in the 70s. Fast forward to the morning of the race. It was chilly. But the layers we added were quickly shed by Mile 2. I only wish I had kept my gloves.

I had hoped to reach a 2:30 but ended up with a 2:42:29. It's not a bad finish time, but I know I could have done much better. Now the main goal is to jump back a few more corrals. ;)

Cheesing at the Start

Whiskey Hill 

Huge congrats to Tammy for a PR!!!!

The loot

 Happy Running!!

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Music City Half

Ok, ok..we did the 10k.

Our streak to run a race every month is still going. The race for March was the Music City 10k and lets just say it was not so scenic. So this might be the shortest entry yet. Ha! It was chilly that morning after the rain (that wasn't suppose to happen) came through. But that changed after I decided to wear a long sleeve instead of a tank. 🙈 If I could have had access to some scissors, I would have cut the sleeves off. But I didn't and I wouldn't run with scissors anyway. 😏 Our finish time wasn't too bad, 1:08:05.

Thumbs up because we are near the finish!!

Now to rest and get ready for Oak Barrel in a few weeks. Happy Running!!!

Friday, February 10, 2017

Lucky 13

Last weekend I ran my 13th Half Marathon at the Cedars of Lebanon Frostbite, and I may have felt like pulling out of the race before it ever started. In fact, as I was standing at the start line.  I didn't want to run at all. But instead of stepping off to the side, I hit start on my watch and took off running.

Fingers ready to hit start. 😂
Miranda mentioned at the start that she was running with me. And although I mentioned a few times for her to go on, I'm glad she stuck with me. We had (what we think) 2 miles of running on a gravel road. (Does this mean we ran a trail race? ;) Had it not been for her, I probably would have walked all of that. She had to get mean towards the end. I wanted to walk, but she yelled at me to keep going. We were almost there, but it seemed to take forever....

Before hitting the gravel. We had
so many to comment on our tights.
Ps. They are from DonaJo

There seemed to be hills, hills and more hills. Oh and even some down hill.  Needless to say, lots of hills. 😬 The best part of the gravel portion was when it finally ended and we had some cuties doing cartwheels. I'd like to think they were just as excited for us to be off the gravel too. 😄

I fell apart at mile 7 and again at mile 10. Mile 7 was probably the worst, I felt like my legs couldn't go anymore. I've had this happen usually around Mile 11 during the past few half marathons. I am starting to work harder on my fuel intake so as soon as I got that feeling, I sucked down a huma gel. Miranda pretty much pulled me along during those miles. Especially around Mile 10 when she yelled at me to keep running. I may have whined just a little bit. 🙈 She mainly yelled for me to quit looking at my watch. I really didn't realize how close I was to finishing with a PR. It still didn't hit once we crossed the finish line. I almost ran out of gas as we were running towards the finish line. Thankfully Miranda yelled at me again to keep going... haha!

So about that PR... the last half I ran was in December and there I finished in 2:37:58. It took me 2 years to finally get a new PR. I ended up shaving another 3 minutes and 6 seconds this time. Whoo Hoo!! Maybe hills are the key....

Whoo Hoo!!! This girl is awesome

Maybe one day I'll have a great finish line photo. 

Medals are handed out, so I made some for
a few running buddies. 

The next race is Oak Barrel and guess what, there are hills. I'm kinda excited about this one. I'm still setting only one finish. That goal seems to be working so lets keep it going.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

New Year, New Races

It's the first day of the New Year and it's the perfect time to run a race in the rain. The forecast was dreary but the race didn't start until 2pm. Per the weather channel, it was suppose to be clear. But we all know they can't always get it right. At least it was a light drizzle and the temps weren't freezing cold. But even with the rain it was still a super fun race.

Penny from work joined in the fun with us. 

I am proud to say I did the race with not setting a finish goal time. Although, as I was running down the hill towards the finish line, as I looked at the clock I caught myself shaking my head and making a face because of my time. Irene tried her best to make an appearance. 😤😉 Before the start another runner asked what my goal time was going to be. He seemed a little shocked when I said I had no goal. I've been running better when I don't set one although I did say I would like to do 30 or so minutes since my previous PR is a 32:42. The hills are what got me. Towards the end it felt as if they would never end. I need to get back to doing hill repeats again. 

Those hills 😜

Soaking wet but still smiling

Even crazy smiles 😂

First race of the year is finished, now its time to buckle down and make 2017 epic. Until next time, Happy Running!